With the French government looking to raise €10bn through the sale of various state assets including FDJ, it would have been easy for these distractions to have got in the way of the National Lottery operator's priorities to invest and grow its digital business.

We are only into the third year of the company's ambitious FDJ 2020 initiative, but FDJ is a winner because it is already seeing the benefits of its digital investment. 2017 was the year FDJ really embraced interactive, with full-year digital sales expected to surpass €1bn for the first time (2016: €900m). FDJ has already developed one of the biggest online eCommerce platforms in Europe, and this is just the start of its modernisation drive.

FDJ's digital transformation was enhanced by the launch of a new mobile app through which players could access its entire gaming portfolio for the first time, including lottery games such as EuroMillions and LOTO, alongside its illiko-branded instant win game platform and Bingo Live multiplayer game.

FDJ's investment in its technology has led it to establish a B2B division to offer its services to other operators, beginning with a new sports betting solution for Switzerland's Loterie Romande. It also became the first of the traditional European lotteries to enter the eSports sector with the launch of the Parions Sport betting portal. FDJ is only at the beginning of its digital journey. We can't wait to see where it goes next.



GIA 2018 Winners:

Sports betting operator of the year - Sky Betting & Gaming
Poker operator of the year - PokerStars
Bingo operator of the year - Stride Gaming
Casino operator of the year - PokerStars Casino
Social casino operator of the year - Aristocrat Leisure
One to watch – operator award - VideoSlots
Operator innovation award - The Stars Group - Stars Rewards
eSports operator of the year - Pinnacle
Marketing campaign of the year - LeoVegas - Hitta.se
Social casino supplier of the year - Scientific Games
Sports betting supplier of the year - SBTech
Poker supplier of the year - Playtech
Bingo supplier of the year - Playtech
Marketing solutions provider of the year - Beehive 
Casino supplier of the year - NetEnt
Game of the year - Playtech - Age of the Gods
Supplier innovation award - Scientific Games OneVoice
Lottery supplier of the year - Scientific Games
One to watch – supplier award - Red Tiger Gaming
eSports supplier of the year - Betgenius
Responsible gambling operator of the year - NO ONE